Frequently Asked Plumbing Questions

When should I replace my hot water tank?

Predicting when a water tank will start to leak is very difficult . Rather, I would be more interested in where the water will travel if the tank were to leak. It is recommended that a tank drainage pan be installed to prevent damage to your investment. If this is not possible it is recommended that a draining tube be installed to move the leakage away to a safe drainage area.

How large should my hot water tank be?

If the family has one to four people a 40 gallon tank {50 US} should be sufficient. However if one of the persons is a teenager or you have a large soaker tub a 60 gallon tank should be installed.

Is there a way of preventing scalding in the shower when other water appliances are working or the toilet need to be flushed?

A pressure balancing valve should be installed in the shower. This controls the amount of water that comes out of the shower head. Also, a practical approach is to simply place your other water appliances on standby while you have a shower.

What is the easiest way to improve my plumbing in my house?

Simply carry out routine maintenance on your equipment and you will always have clear lines.

At what temperature should I set my hot water tank?

The optimum temperature is subjective. It all depends on your needs. The temperature should be set in your house based on who will use the facilities. For example, if you have young children I recommend lowering the maximum temperature to prevent accidental scalding.

How deep do I have to bury a gas line?


Do I have to put a tracing wire on a buried gas line?

Yes or magnetic tape

What is the cost of a gas meter installation currently?

$25.00 if house falls within 20 meters of the gas line in the street

What is the difference between low pressure gas and high pressure gas in my home?

Low pressure systems require a larger pipe than a 2 psi system. A 2 psi system allows more btu’s in a smaller less invasive pipe.

Why are some pipes larger and steel and some are smaller and copper?

Larger steel piping is more common in commercial applications and low pressure systems. Some gasfitters prefer working with steel.

What does condensing mean?

During the combustion process steam or water vapor is formed and cools creating condensation that is required to be piped to a drain. Highly acidic and will corrode metal piping.

What are the clearances for a gas stove top and oven?

16” On either side of the range to the cabinets and 30” to the cabinets directly above the stove. Regardless of any range hood or microwave

Who looks after the permit process for gas installations?

The gasfitter technically as far as the safety authority is concerned a licensed and certified gasfitter

Can I install a closet around my gas furnace and hot water tank?

If it is a mid efficient furnace or water heater( metal venting) a fresh air pipe must be installed from the outside wall to in the mechanical room 2 feet from the floor you can, but you must ensure the proper clearances and make sure there is fresh air make up for the appliances that need them

Do I need a chimney to install gas appliances in my house?
Depends on the appliance. Water heaters,  wall furnaces, tankless water heaters can vent to an outside wall. Fireplaces can vent to an outside wall. Fireplace inserts require a chimney.
Most appliances today have venting that can run directly out of a side wall or roof.

My house has electric baseboard but we have gas on the street, what can I do to get gas heat or gas hot water?
you can install a wall furnace for heat and an on demand water heater for domestic hot water

Do I actually save money by converting from oil to gas or electric heat to gas?
Natural gas is a third the cost of oil. To burn 1,000,000 btus of oil costs approx. $ 25-$27 Vs $ 7-$10 for ng.

Do I save money from changing my electric or oil hot water tank to gas?
In the long run yes. Gas appliance costs more to install than electric but has a lot less operating costs.

How do we get hot water to our taps instantly?
you would have to install a recirculating hot water line from the farthest fixture as possible back to a circulating pump on the cold supply to your hot water heater

What fixtures can I get a rebate for.?
Currently furnaces, wall furnaces fireplaces, water heaters, boilers, tankless water heaters. View our Rebates page for more information.

I have hot water heat. Is there an appliance that heats both the hot water for heat and domestic hot water?
A combi boiler or boiler with an indirect fired storage tank will do both domestic hot water and space heating provided they already have a boiler system.